Hidden 13 days ago Post by Silvan Haven
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Silvan Haven Interstellar Paladin

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Fionn Harken


Retreating down the dark and ominous stairway and collapsing the cairn over the entrance sounded like a wonderful idea. The undead wouldn't be able to get through for an hour, plenty of time for them to find a more permanent method of closing this particular entrance to Doch Mol. Fionn couldn't do that yet though. Several people were still making their ways to safety. To collapse it now would doom them.

So Fionn was currently hovering about the entrance of the cairn. Laying into zombies and skeletons as they got too close. With a grunt he slammed a gauntleted fist into the side of a technically hollow skull. The old bone shattered at the impact and the green mist inhabiting it dissipated in the stiff breeze that had picked back up. It was the last abomination against nature in the immediate vicinity, not something that would last but it gave him a chance to catch his breath and look around.

And what he saw didn't make him particularly happy. More undead were digging themselves out of the ground with every second and the three people still out there were not half close enough for the mage's liking. With a muttered curse he thrust his blade point down into the ground and sent a mental order to his armor. Lines of light abruptly arced across his body. To most they would be little more than an odd source of illumination, to Fionn they were lines of power.

Without the need to draw in ambient light or create it himself the mage could put much more of his power into making actually useful stuff happen. In this case it was by sending out a hail of bolts that slammed into the lesser undead blocking the route to safety. Rotting limbs went flying and bones burned to ash under the onslaught. It certainly looked fancy enough, the white and blue armored figure standing there with both hands held before him. Bolts of white light lancing forth to smite his foes.

Even with the help from his armor such a move was draining however. Each bolt was weak on its own and not all of the moving corpses that were hit fell unmoving to the ground. If those still out on the field didn't move fast their brief corridor would once again close.

Meanwhile Nakreyya and anyone else who had ventured down the stairs would find themselves in a medium sized chamber. Despite this assumedly being a hidden back entrance to the fortress city the walls were covered in detailed carvings. Artistically they were quite impressive, whoever had created them was a skilled worker of their craft. What those carvings depicted was another story. Scenes of dwarven taskmasters overseeing fields of slaves took up one section of the circular wall. Another was dedicated to necromancers plying their craft. A third section showed one of hordes of the dead storming some ancient city.

It was like that everywhere. The glories of the Rzailian Empire carved in exquisite detail. Also set into the walls were ten shadowy recesses holding large figures. With very little light reaching past the murky stairwell it was hard to tell if the armored figures were made of actual plate mail or if they were simply another set of carvings themselves. Whichever it was their unseeing helmets gazed ominously into the rest of the chamber.

Opposite where the stairs led into the room was a large door. Made entirely of some form of metal it was festooned with carvings similar in nature to those on the walls of the chamber. Perhaps most interesting to those observing however, was the large mechanical lock that took up the center of the double doors. The old Empire's technology was on clear display in the series of interlocking wheels and gears that bridged the center of the two slabs of black metal. Set proudly front and center was a series of brass rings, starting from a small disk and growing bigger and bigger until the outermost was a good half meter across. If one squinted hard enough they could even make a series of ancient runes set into the metal. Once again the dim light wasn't helping matters.
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Hidden 13 days ago Post by SpawnMeme
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It was nearly instinctual, or perhaps instinctual itself for the Orc to fasten his pace towards the cover of the cairn. The green light that had filled the realm before them had caused him to have immediately jump into action, not one who has dealt with the arcane too much, he still knew through experience that the sudden wailing of the... dead, and the strong green light was somewhat like that of a firefight on a planet. Chaos was something the Orc was used to being within, and the sight of skeletons and corpses rising before him did strike a good deal of fear within him, despite having seen much in his four years as a galactic mercenary, he had never seen the dead literally be raised from the earth to assail upon the living.

It did take him aback, since he was raised by ancient traditions that the dead were sacred, and to be burnt via cremation to keep their remains from being desecrated. A brief thought filled his head regarding the situation as his combat boots dug themselves into the dead black sand, the Orc's pace breaking out into a full sprint towards the entrance of the obelisk. The gear he was handling at least weighed a dozen or so pounds, which slowed him down somewhat but he appeared to have donned enough weight in armor in his life to keep a decent pace within a combat scenario. This was much different he thought, the Orc came to realize this must have been also what it meant when his parents taught him of the tradition of cremation, and it didn't exactly fill him with rage, but a small degree of pity for the remains of those who had died.

He also was motivated by the dead oddly enough, knowing that if he fastened his progress he would perhaps not end up among these... creatures that had been raised by some form of supernatural force he only heard tales of on this planet. The armored mage he saw bewildered him slightly as he saw the bolts of light clear the path for him, the young swordsman and the barbarian female warrior. He also cursed to himself on how he had only one shot within the primitive rifle he had, as he caught site of a green figure, a grotesque thing that was the remains of a dead human explorer much like the other ones he had seen. He raised his rifle and fired the heavy calibered rifle into the corpse of the undead, the powerful rifle causing the undead to fall back into the dead dust with a large hole in it's chest cavity. Coagulated blood splayed out across the ground, disgusting the young Orc as he'd go to set his bayonet and settle the long rifle into a tactical position. A loud roar escaped his mouth as he would be seen driving the bayonet situated on the end of the rifle into various undead, following up with a series of strikes and so forth as he booked it through the small pace Fionn had made for him and the others. He was determined to make it to the obelisk, and didn't care if the others he had saw had gotten there before him, only caring for survival at this point as his rifle's buttstock slammed through the living remains of a human skeleton.
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Hidden 12 days ago Post by Tristwich
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Never before has a dwarf been able to gaze upon the original works of his people. For so long they have had to scramble to retrieve scraps from the ground, never anything greater than a pot or stone tablet. Now here he was, standing before the most incredible find he could have ever dreamed of. Somehow though, it all just felt so...wrong.

Looking at these carvings, knowing that what he was taught as a lad about the history of this place, it was all true then. The dwarves of this place, his ancestors, were cruel taskmasters who raised the dead in order to do their bidding. Such an ugly history, a legacy which now belonged to Kazadime and his people, all while others reaped the after effects of these practices. Anger was beginning to boil in the pit of his stomach.

"I can't believe it...these were my ancestors...my kin" He said in abstract shock, the warrior struggling to keep his anger in check. "No...no this is not our way, this will not be our legacy!" With a swing of his mace, he struck the wall where a dwarf was carved holding a whip, disfiguring the picture as pieces of stone flew off.

Zharak needed something to work out his anger on. His expertise on clockwork machinery was not nearly expansive enough to figure out how to unlock it. Since he couldn't use his mind to be helpful, he would put his sword arm to use as he stomped his way back towards the entrance of the cairn. He would deliver a true death to the monsters coming for them from the sand.

"Look out laddy!" Zharak said as he got close to where the battle mage was making his stand. "I got a bone to pick with these bastards." A skeleton tried to rush him from his left, one swing took out its legs, the next shattered its skull into fragmented pieces. "More where that came from. Groch Mokar!"
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Hidden 11 days ago Post by Mataus
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Having been the second person to head down the stairs, Traveller had been able to look, with difficulty in the dim light, over a small section of the carvings etched into the walls. None of the books on the Rzailian empire could compare to the amount of knowledge he found before him. A university or a library would kill for a copy of these walls. In fact, the temple he was raised at would love to add this story to their archive. But for now the story would remain lost to the ages, as those who could record it were surrounded by an army of the dead. His gaze swept over the carvings and the recesses to the door. As Traveller approached the door, he knew he was out of luck. Locks were not his specialty. An ordinary door he could beat down... but not this. It was better left to the others in their group... assuming they could open it themselves.

Traveller turned from the door and went straight back to the doorway, where he could feel Fionn unleashing his arcane armament. On the way up he passed several of the adventures he had met earlier as well as some newcomers. He would have to speak with them later. There was definitely a diverse gathering of heroes; it wasn't a normal Ecetopia group that may form to stop the local bandits. He pondered on the way evil could draw good, like how magic attracted mages. It was a good thing, otherwise the universe would conquered by evil. Reaching the top of the staircases, and without further ado, Traveller released his large sword from its magical bindings on his back, then finally joined Fionn at the entrance. Fionn wasn't the only one up there holding the undead back, there was a dwarf swinging away.

Sword in hand and his arcane shield protecting him, Traveller went into the fray. His sword moved in a blur, cutting through entire bodies and shattering bone where the sword's edge didn't make clean contact. Every time he brought an undead warrior down he would 'blink' to the next nearby one, making him a blur as well. His shield flared here and there when hands swatted at him, but the undead here used numbers to kill enemies... not speed. Not yet at least. That was also a problem. One by one the bodies in varying states of decay went down, but to win any battle here Traveller would have to be killing droves with every swing of his sword. The best he could do was help keep the entrance somewhat clear for the others. At the same time the constant use of magic would tire him out. They would have to close the entrance to the city soon.
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Hidden 11 days ago Post by Kasai Uchiha
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Gionni turned her head quickly. Some guy was running toward her. He looked young and not very much to her. She was already valuing him less than a five. As he rambled on, her eyes turned to the green light in the sky. She would have to consult him later about who she was as more monsters ruptured from the ground. As she took hold of her weapon, she suddenly remembered that she was in public. Even if she was in the wastelands, she had to keep appearances.

"Oh my," she said with a cutesy expression. Her legs buckled close as she held her mighty axe in her hands. "There is an awful lot of them. I hope you can protect me you big, strong man."

"As if."

She followed after Ivas, swinging her axe now and again, but letting the man do most of the work. Men became more protective when they saw a woman not doing as well as them. Better for her. She moved through into the new structure they entered.

"Hurry close the door!"
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Hidden 10 days ago Post by Normie
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Leaving the dead and the doorway behind, Ivas made his way down the stairs and underneath the surface, calling for anyone nearby to join him. There was nothing out there for them--they made it into the dungeon, now the only way was forward! Or down. Sort of both, he thought, as he hopped down the stairs a couple at a time. On the way, he passed a dwarf who looked mighty angry and was running back up the stairs in the opposite direction. It was a good thing the stout little fellow was so short, as if Ivas hadn't been able to jump completely over him at the last moment, they might have bowled right into each other!

"Hey come back, mister dwarf! You're going the wrong way!"

He was just about to give chase when he was distracted by the realization that his leap had taken him through the doorway at the bottom of the stairs and into the large chamber with the statues, carvings, and seemingly impenetrable door. While the attention of others nearby was drawn immediately to the great door, Ivas was much smarter than that. No adventurer worth his salt simply barreled through such a large and decorative chamber without checking for loot first! There was guaranteed to be something valuable somewhere in here! Ivas set about examining the various statues and carvings with a surprising degree of focus and diligence, given his usual demeanor.

"Whoa, hey, what happened to your arm?!" he said as one of his searches took him close to Grug. "Are you okay? Here, I have these healing plant thingies! If you rub them on the arm it might make it feel better. Or maybe if you eat them. Can't remember which one! You'll figure it out!"

The boy reached into a pocket of his pack and took out what was likely his whole stock of healing herbs, given the size of the bundle relative to that of the pouch from which they were produced, then threw them at Grug like an expert pitcher making a fastball. A baseball thrown like that would leave a nasty bruise, but the worst this ball of leaves and stems would inflict was a sneeze or two if they got too close to the orc's nose. Seemingly assured that the issue was settled, Ivas returned to searching around and behind the statues, telling "mister old orc" to holler if he found anything as an afterthought.

He tapped his sword blade lightly on each surface to check for hollow spaces, shined the magical light from its pommel slowly across them to dispel illusions, and felt under every nook and cranny for hidden buttons. There had to be treasure in here somewhere, dammit!
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Hidden 10 days ago 10 days ago Post by Dark Light
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Grace is not something Arex could recall seeing or experiencing much of since his sudden abandonment on this forsaken sand trap, but his landing, by far, was the least graceful thing of all his horrid experiences so far.
Literally slung-shot into the sky, the breath was stripped from his lungs as his flesh and face were sandblasted by the cruel gritty air. The unforgiving ground caught up with him much faster than his stomach or momentum could. On top of it all, somewhere along the trip his new friend had abandoned him too.

Plummeting heavily into the ground a dark plume of sand erupted from his shallow crater. Dazed and confused he was oblivious to the dangers that surrounded him.
He ached all over and could swear he undoubtedly heard the sharp sound of bones cracking and dislocating. At the very least his flesh and muscle would be badly bruised. Thankfully he didn't have too much of either. Beneath the dull throbbing there was a quiet chattering stirring from beneath his heavy frame. There was deffinatly something harder than just sand here where he lay. It felt like jagged or lumpy rocks. Rocks that wriggled and squirmed beneath his weight. Reaching up and clawing at him with long boney fingers. Jaws rattling, teeth slammming agains teeth as the dead snapped at him.

It was overwhelming, he was swimming in a sea of dead. Looming over him in the near distance a shadow was cast across his path as an image stood out from the sands unmissable and proud. "Not this fucking place again" he groans before letting out a loud desperate and deep roar of rage.
Hidden 9 days ago 9 days ago Post by CoyoteLovely
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(Editing for Confusion:)

The Cairn / Near the Giant Locked Door

Nakreyya's eyepiece informed her as to the dangers inherent as she stepped forward. She could avoid loose rocks and shale - sidestepped stones slick with moss or fungus... and she kept her gaze steady for the telltale signs of traps and other issues. She realized, however, that her eyepatch only benefitted herself, it did nothing to assist the others to avoid the natural dangers of the cave. She decided to see if her glass eye would cast a better glow...

She had delved caves long before her eye had been raked from her skull, and did not technically need the assistance of the eyepatch, no matter how much she leaned on it for ease. Quietly, she reached up and pulled the eyepatch off of her head, shaking her hair free of where it'd been held down by the straps. She blinked a few times, and told the magically imbued glass eye to expend energy to glow. Suddenly, her eye was a torchlight in the dim dank of the corridor. She scanned around, letting her other eye adjust to the new light level.

She was passed in running by two individuals who had barrelled past her down into the main cairn and then back up to fight... She continued to move slowly, unconvinced that - even in their hasty look over the area - it was safe.

Quietly, Nakreyya walked over to a large door at the end of the hallway, looking it over with her one glowing eye. She did nothing but breathe for a moment, looking for traps, and pondering the best course of action to begin to open the door. It appeared to have some sort of lock on it... at least that was something for which she was quite familiar.

@Silvan Haven @Hekazu @EchoesofOld @Mataus @Ciaran @Normie @Tristwich @SpawnMeme @Kasai Uchiha @Dark Light @Liaison
Hidden 2 days ago Post by Normie
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By the Big Door I Guess

Ivas was quickly growing frustrated, despite his rigor absolutely nothing was coming up on his treasure sense. That, well, it just didn't make any sense! This was most definitely the type of place that should set it off blaring with alarm bells! He was about to ask one of the other random folks around here what gives when he finally caught a break. One of the carvings on the wall lit up with strange lights when his sword touched it! Jumping forward to inspect it closely, Ivas could see that it was quite different from the others. While the other carvings on the walls were more abstract images and symbols, drawn with harsh lines and rigid angles, this one was all round shapes and curving corners.

It depicted four young women of varying size and stature, who all looked extremely happy about..... something. Ivas was struck by how detailed their faces were for a stone carving, and how pretty the artist had managed to make them despite the rocky medium. One of them had lit up with a glowing outline when his sword touched her image, though it faded back away soon afterwards. He found that re-touching the picture of her re-activated the outline, and that he could do the same with all the others. The two shorter figures, both of whom also had short hair, were outlined in pink light; the second tallest, who had a long ponytail, in gold; and the tallest, who had long, straight hair, in deep blue. Turning all four of them "on" didn't seem to really do anything except that their lights no longer faded, but now remained illuminated.

"Hey guys! Check this out! D'you think this weird picture does anything? Maybe there's a chest full of gold behind it, if we like, figure out the puzzle!" he said to no one in particular.
Hidden 2 days ago Post by Kasai Uchiha
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Gionni glared Ivas with his inspection. She did not like the sight of the girl like figures present before them. The way he smiled and adored them made her mighty jealous. Was she not good looking enough for him to be gargling at him? She frowned at such a display of masculine aloofness. She struck her greataxe forward, missing Ivas by a hair. The blade struck into the wall and her hand came to her mouth.

"Oh I am sorry! My axe slipped. I am so afraid right now." She pulled her weapon back while being gleeful of her little trick there.

Now he has to pay more attention to me!
Hidden 1 day ago Post by Normie
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Ivas jumped in fright as a huge axe blade sailed over his head, nearly taking it off!

"Whoa-hey! Axe lady, there you are! I'm glad you made it, but watch where you're swinging that thing! Wait, hey...."

Following the blade's arc through the air, he could see that it had hit one of the girl-shaped carvings on the wall next to him--the taller of the two with pink outlines. The outline started to blink around the figure's neck, almost like the carving was suggesting that something was supposed to go around it! Then the pink light disappeared from the figure completely!

"Wow, check that out! The magic stuff changed! How'd you do that, axe lady?! Maybe we can figure this thing out together. Here, get on my shoulders, I'll give you a lift to get a better look at the pictures!"
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